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Costs For Some Will Rise Under Health Care Reform, Says HHS Secretary

03/28/13

  11:57:53 am, by MedBen5   , 229 words,  
Categories: News, Health Plan Management

Costs For Some Will Rise Under Health Care Reform, Says HHS Secretary

Coinciding with the Society of Actuaries analysis we reported yesterday comes an acknowledgment by the Obama administration that health care costs will rise for some people under the Affordable Care Act… but exactly who will be affected and by how much remains to be seen, Reuters reports.

“Everything is speculation. I think there’s likely to be some shifting in the markets,” said U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, adding that definitive data will become available when state-based exchanges come online in October.

Because the health care reform law will no longer permit higher rates on women and people with pre-existing medical conditions, individual insurance costs for other deomographics will likely go up in reponse. “Women are going to see some lower costs, some men are going to see some higher costs,” Sebelius said. “It’s sort of a one to one shift … some of the older customers may see a slight decline, and some of the younger ones are going to see a slight increase.”

Enhanced benefits for basic insurance coverage will also contribute to a rise in individual plan premiums, Sebelius noted. “These folks will be moving into a really fully insured product for the first time, so there may be a higher cost associated with getting into that market.”

As for employer plans, she said that market segment was “likely to see very little impact.”

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